7 Tips to Get Over The Weight-Loss Plateau
February 20, 2014

7 Tips To Get Over The Weight-Loss Plateau

Everyone who has committed to a weight-loss plan has experienced the plateau. The plateau is the most frustrating part of losing weight. For weeks, a weight-loss program works, but then BOOM! The scale does not budge. The body refuses to shed any more pounds despite the fact that we are following our plan precisely. Yes, it is frustrating, and for many this leads to giving up. In an effort to help all those experiencing a weight-loss plateau, Walgreens has provided some advice on how to move back on the weight-loss track.

Tip #1 – Act Like You Did Week 1

That first week that we commit to a weight-loss program is often the week we are most vigilant and dedicated. We follow the exercise plan precisely, eat healthy, balanced meals, and keep track of everything. So, when we hit the plateau, we should look back at our logs, dig deep into our memories, and see what we were doing Week 1. Once we figure that out, we should then focus on that same enthusiasm and commitment.

Tip #2 – Count All Those Calories…All of Them

If we are on a weight-loss plan, counting calories is often a part of that. After all, weight loss comes as a result of calories in and calories out; if we want to lose weight, we must ingest fewer calories and/or use more for energy. Obviously, tracking our calories is really important if our goal is to lose weight. Moreover, as we approach our goal weight, watching calories becomes even more important because those last few pounds can be the most difficult. Tightening our caloric intake and adjusting the exercise we do will help recalibrate.

Tip #3 – Don’t Eat Back Exercise Calories

In addition to tracking our caloric intake, we also must consider the calories we burn as we exercise. In weight loss, it is crucial we not overestimate how many calories we burn. If we do and then we go out and eat a high-calorie meal because we feel “justified” that we exercised so much, then we will not lose weight. In fact, we just might gain it.

Tip #4 – Diet Foods Do Not Equal Safe Foods

Often when we are watching our food intake, we buy “light,” “fat free,” “calorie free,” or “diet” food and then eat more of it than normal because it has fewer calories. This can be very dangerous for a variety of reasons. First, these calories still count toward all consumed calories. Second, often these diet foods have more sugar in them to compensate for flavor. Third, they often come packed with more dangerous sodium. The best bet is to make our own meals and not rely on pre-made foods.

Tip #5 – Keep that Food Diary

If we have hit a plateau, sometimes the best way to overcome it is to find out why we are eating. That is why the food diary is so important. Not only does it help us keep track of what we eat and how many calories each food item has, but it also shows the times we eat and even may lead to an understanding of why we eat. This can help us see any patterns to our eating and adjust our habits and exercise plan accordingly.

Tip #6 – Practice Not Regaining

As the Walgreen’s article explains, “When you hit a plateau, find and fine-tune strategies that will help you stay at your current weight without regaining. And don’t give in to thinking that you’ll never lose another pound again….Remember, weight loss is rarely a straight, smooth trajectory. It’s about making lifelong habits and staying focused on healthy behaviors while handling the bumps in life — and the ups and downs that will inevitably reflect on the scale.”

Tip #7 – Maybe It’s Time for a Change-up

When we hit a plateau with our current diet and exercise plan, perhaps that means we need to change it up. We should look into other exercise options and pay attention to what we eat to see if there is some other, better option. Sometimes even just a little change can re-spark the weight loss.

Hitting that plateau is never fun, but with tips like these, we can find a way to get over that hump and see our weight-loss goal.

Image Credit: Thinkstock

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Rayshell E. Clapper is an Associate Professor of English at a rural college in Oklahoma where she teaches Creative Writing, Literature, and Composition classes. She has presented her original fiction and non-fiction at several conferences and events including: Scissortail Creative Writing Festival, Howlers and Yawpers Creativity Symposium, Southwest/Texas Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association Regional Conference, and Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. Her publications include Cybersoleil Journal, Sugar Mule Literary Magazine, Red Dirt Anthology, Originals, and Oklahoma English Journal. Beyond her written works, she successfully created a writer's group in rural Oklahoma to support burgeoning writers. The written word is her passion, and all she experiences inspires that passion. She hopes to help inspire others through her words.

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